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Nano cube filtration vs sponge filters

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I've got a JBL 28gal nano cube tank with 25 white clouds.  Algae has been a problem, so has the water quality.  The ecology doesn't seem well established after almost 6 months with recurring spikes in nitrates and nitrites.

The tank has a built-in overflow style filter powered by a pair of pumps in the outside chambers that returns the water after it passes through the filter chamber. The removable chamber holds ceramic cylinders plus 3 chunks of porous foam.  I'm wondering if this method of filtration doesn't work as well as it should?  I could easily replace it with a pair of sponges and shut that mess down.

I have been introducing plants that struggle with hair algae almost constantly on the growth.

Thoughts on the filtration greatly appreciated!


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Well speaking from a biological filtration method it should be more than adequate. Every surface that touches water could house bacteria. What does your tank maintenance schedule look like? How often, how much, what do you do? What types of plants have you tried? You should be doing rather large water changes with that kind of bioload.

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